Justification by ethecon – Foundation Ethics & Economics for honouring
the environmental and peace activist Hanna Poddig (Germany)
with the International ethecon Blue Planet Award 2017
The two international ethecon awards
Every year since 2006 ethecon Foundation Ethic & Economy has awarded two prizes: the International ethecon Blue Planet Award and the International ethecon Black Planet Award.
With the International ethecon Blue Planet Award ethecon honors individuals who have shown outstanding commitment to protecting and defending human ethics in the conflict area of ethics and economics, thus preserving and saving our Blue Planet.
With the International ethecon Black Planet Award ethecon vilifies individuals who trample on human ethics in the most shocking manner in the conflict area of ethics and economics, thus ruining and destroying our Blue Planet and turning it into a Black Planet.
The International ethecon Blue Planet Award and the International ethecon Black Planet Award are just two sides of the same coin. Together they reflect the state of the world. On the one hand they honour a commitment to environmental protection, justice and peace, on the other they condemn reckless environmental destruction, injustice and war. The prizes encourage resistance, change and involvement. In both cases the “Blue Planet” means the complete animate and inanimate world.
Each year in February an international call is made to submit nominations for the International ethecon Blue Planet Award and for the International ethecon Black Planet Award. The awardees are determined by the trustees in a thorough selection process until August.
of the board of trustees and management
on the International ethecon BluePlanet Award 2017
With the International ethecon Blue Planet Award 2017 the foundation honours the
environmental and peace activist Hanna Poddig (Germany)
The aforementioned awardee receives the International ethecon Blue Planet Award – complementing the International ethecon Black Planet Award as well as the aims of ethecon Foundation Ethics & Economics – because they protect fundamental human ethics in the conflict area of ethics and economics, thus protecting and defending our Blue Planet.
They are honoured with the International ethecon Blue Planet Award 2017 because they set an example in the defence of peace, human rights, the protection of the environment and social security.
Hanna Poddig is courageous, consistent, incorruptible and with integrity. She practices civil disobedience, resists dominant norms and laws risking punishment and disadvantages for her physical and mental well-being as well as her livelihood. She shows social responsibility and moral courage.
The recipient of the International ethecon Blue Planet Award is one of those people guarding moral and ethics, thus defending the Blue Planet.
In a world increasingly driven by profit as the sole criterion for any decision and development she is a David pitted against Goliath, disadvantaged, persecuted and excluded, even threatened by attacks on her livelihood, health and life. Still, she is one of those people humanity owes peace, human rights, social security and environmental protection.
The recipient will be personally honoured with the International ethecon Blue Planet Award 2017, representative of all those who fight for the preservation or rescue of the Blue Planet. Her award is meant as an example and incentive to her and us all.
The International ethecon Blue Planet Award 2017 sees itself as a mobilisation for the fight for peace, justice and environmental protection and against warmongering, exploitation and environmental destruction. It is meant to sensitise and alert the public, uncover the context and those responsible and strengthen the resistance against environmental destruction, war and injustice.
for awarding the International ethecon Blue Planet Award 2017 to
environmental and peace activist Hanna Poddig (Germany)
The board of trustees and the management of ethecon have based their decision on news reports, on publicly known facts, on information collected by journalists from all over the world, on publicly available documents, on investigations by government departments and activists of social movements in various countries and last but not least on material published by Hanna Poddig herself.
From the wealth of facts we researched in the course of the selection process of the International ethecon Blue Planet Award 2017 to environmental and peace activist Hanna Poddig (Germany) these are just a few examples:
From an early age Hanna Poddig has been active for peace and the environment. She has been characterised as principled, energetic and imaginative. Despite all the hostility and repression she stays true to her principles. She is serious about moral courage and never gives up in the face of war mongers, exploiters and environmental destruction. For her it has never been about being right and knowing better, but about getting rid of injustices and actively fighting for a liveable world. She wants to make clear that everyone‚s contribution counts and that indeed everyone matters and can get active. She sees herself as a personal and easy to follow example and wants to motivate and inspire. In doing so, she not only criticises symptoms and excesses, but also the roots of the profit-driven social system – capitalism. Accordingly her campaign is directed to a transformation of the social conditions to a self-determined life free from profit motives.
Already as a child Hanna Poddig was politically influenced by her parents. She demonstrated with them against the expansion of motorways, against waste incinerators and atomic power plants.
For her, looking away and following a “normal” career path like her school mates and friends was not an option. Already as a young woman she chose the more difficult way of argument, resistance and change.
After watching a film about the resistance group the White Rose during the Hitler dictatorship at school, she was annoyed about her class mates who answered the question if they could be oppositional like Sophie Scholl under such conditions naturally as yes. She was far more honest herself, approached the question much more self-critically and realised that her class mates paid mere lip service without substance which would vanish into thin air at the first opportunity.
Later on she unexpectedly came full circle. Hanna had a serious conversation with her grandparents. To her relief and delight they told her that they saw their granddaughter‘s resistance against exploitation, environmental destruction and war as a continuation of the family tradition, as Hanna‚s great-grandparents already stood against the Hitler dictatorship and the war and were deported to a concentration camp.
At only 16 years of age she took on responsibility as the leader of a BUND (FoE Germany) youth group.
With 17 she joined the environmental organisation Robin Wood. From 2002-2007 she worked there as a climbing activist and was elected to the council despite her young age.
She also took part in the blockades of the Rhein-Main Airbase. She was prosecuted for a civil offence as a result. By then she frequently encountered police repression. Time and again she was arrested arbitrarily during demonstrations and political actions and had to spend many hours in detention.
In 2004 she joined an action aiming to stop a transport with nuclear waste. The transport reached its destination with considerable delay.
In 2006 she occupied Brandenburg Gate and unveiled a banner saying “Kohle Killt Klima” Coal kills climate. One day before the climate summit she wanted to alert the public to the dangers of the coal industry with this courageous protest.
Since 2007 she has been working as an author of the anarchist newspaper “Graswurzelrevolution” and is an editor of the grassroots democratic and domination-free magazine “Grünes Blatt”.
In 2008 she was sentenced to 90 days imprisonment because of a blockade. This was the first time she consciously risked her life. In this action she locked herself on to the rails of Husum-Kiel line to stop a military tank transport. With four other activists who supported her with blankets, food and banners she managed to stop the train and delay the transport considerably. Because of the damage caused to the rails Deutsche Bahn threatened her with having to pay off the debt for the rest of her life.
In 2009 her book “Radikal mutig, meine Anleitung anders zu sein” Radical courage. My guide to being different was published. In the book she describes her life, her motivation for her political activism and educates about the dominant conditions. She is leading her own little revolution and wants to inspire as many people as possible to think for themselves.
Despite the threat and the imprisonment of 2008 she locked herself to rails again in 2012. This time it was not a military transport but uranium from the uranium enrichment facility in Gronau. Again she risked her life to save the environment and people. Because of the blockade of the uranium transport she was fined with 110 daily rates, the highest punishment ever meted out in Germany for a blockade.
Since 2012 she has been active in an anarchist translators collective and since 2014 she regularly does readings and workshops on any political topics.
As an activist of social movements for peace, human rights and environmental protection she gave her opinion in a widely acclaimed open letter in 2017 on police violence and the fight for a better world in the context of the G20 meeting of the powerful.
Instead of paying the fine Hanna always went to prison. It was her motto to cause the highest possible cost through her actions to the perpetrators and their state. This then led to the idea to serve only half of the sentence and pay the remainder with donations. At the same time she processed her experience in prisons and fundamentally criticises the penal system.
Hanna consciously refuses to earn money with a regular job. She re-defines the concept of work and calls herself a full-time activist. She does not have a fixed abode and gets food from the containers of the big and small supermarkets. She wants to stay independent and does not claim any state benefits.
Alongside her activities as activist Hanna travels through Europe to strengthen international cooperation for a transformation of the world to peace, human rights and environmental protection and to organise global cooperation through talks in other countries.
of the ethecon board of trustees and management
The environmental and peace activist Hanna Poddig (Germany) defends human and environmental rights with no regard for her own security and stands up against war, atomic industry and state violence. She fights not only for human and environmental rights, but also for the abolishment of the dominant capitalist system. She acts for the benefit of humanity. She holds up moral and ethics and stands against the ruin of earth as a Black Planet.
In a world increasingly driven by profit as the sole criterion for any decision and development ethecon considers Hanna Poddig‘s actions as an exemplary contribution the the rescue and preservation of our Blue Planet. For this admirable care and development of humane values ethecon – Foundation Ethics & Economics honours Hanna Poddig with the International ethecon Blue Planet Award 2017.
The International ethecon Blue Planet Award 2017 to the environmental and peace activist Hanna Poddig (Germany) will be presented together with the International ethecon Black Planet Award 2017 to Armin Papperger (Chairman of the Management Board) and Ulrich Grillo (Chairman of the Supervisory Board) as well as the major shareholders Larry Fink (Chairman and CEO of BLACKROCK Inc.) and Paul Manduca (Chairman of PRUDENTIAL PLC) of the arms corporation Rheinmetall (Germany) in a public ceremony in Berlin on 18th November 2017.
Berlin, 21st September 2017, International Day of Peace